Cover image for He's scared, she's scared : understanding the hidden fears that sabotage your relationships
He's scared, she's scared : understanding the hidden fears that sabotage your relationships
Carter, Steven, 1956-
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Publication Information:
New York : Delacorte Press, 1993.
Physical Description:
xviii, 331 pages ; 25 cm
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BF619 .C37 1993 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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Available for the first time in paperback, this  follow-up to the phenomenally successful  Men Who Can't Love tackles the issue of  commitmentphobia, that persistent obstacle to truly  satisfying contemporary relationships. Authors  Stephen Carter and Julia Sokol explore why modern men  and women are torn between the desire for intimacy  and the equally intense need for independence.  Drawing on numerous interviews and real-life  scenarios, and written with humor, insight, and the kind  of wisdom gained by personal experience,  He's Scared, She's Scared offes guidance  for all of us who want genuine, sustained intimacy  with our romantic partners. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ah, commitmentphobia again becomes the topic of conversation as relationship authors (What Smart Women Know, 1990) Carter and Sokol delve into the characteristics that make men and women say, "I'm scared, so go away." This time, they include both genders in their psychological archaeology; women, too, as explained in the introduction, can avoid coupling. Perhaps their most valuable contribution to the burgeoning self-help shelf is the probing of fears and fantasies, four real reasons why commitments won't happen: narcissistic (the perfectionist); claustrophobic (independent forever); universal (the dreamer); circumstantial (no more problems). All of this analysis is buttressed by instantly recognizable case histories; yet, not enough text--only the last chapter and an appendix--is devoted to corrections for the problem. ~--Barbara Jacobs

Publisher's Weekly Review

Carter and Sokol ( Men Who Can't Love ) argue that fear of commitment affects women as well as men, and that both sexes crave the often conflicting conditions of intimacy and freedom. According to the authors, men tend to be more prone to ``active'' avoidance after winning over a lover. ``Passive'' avoidance, on the other hand, involves choosing someone who is unavailable--a woman falls for a gay man; a man becomes smitten with his married woman boss; or either sex subconsciously chooses as a love object a person who is an active avoider. Using case histories, the authors examine the reasons people avoid commitment and through quizzes encourage readers to determine their ``commitmentphobic'' patterns--narcissistic, claustrophobic, universal, or circumstantial--and explore feelings and fears. The authors give straightforward advice on how to detect commitmentphobia in others and how to move towards true intimacy. The authors' achievement is that they have gone beyond the obvious avoidance patterns to uncover the more subtle ways men and women sabotage love. First serial to New Woman; author tour. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

From the authors of What Every Man Should Know About the ``New Woman'' ( LJ 6/1/84) comes this guide for those who are afraid of committed relationships. The authors are not therapists; their advice is based on insight gleaned from interviews rather than clinical experience or psychological research. Carter and Sokol spent eight years interviewing men and women about their relationships to find anxieties, issues, and behavioral patterns common to people who can't commit. Written in a nonjudgmental, nontechnical style, their book is divided into three sections: identifying fears that undermine commitment, facing them, and managing them. Examples and diagnostic and directive lists make this book easy to read. There is something here for every personality type, and even the committed will recognize some of their anxieties. For public libraries where self-help books are popular. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/15/93.-- Carol R. Nelson, Ball State Univ. Lib., Muncie, Ind. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.